Family bids tearful adieu to Indian student killed in US

September 22nd, 2008 - 5:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, Sep 22 (IANS) Family and friends of Tummala Soumya Reddy, an Indian student who was shot dead in the US more than a week ago, bid a tearful adieu to her as she was cremated here Monday.The cremation took place at Bansilalpet cremation ground as the young student’s relatives cried inconsolably.

The body of Soumya, who was shot dead in Chicago 10 days ago, was flown into the city by an Indian flight from New Delhi Sunday night. The body was earlier brought to the national capital from the US.

Soumya, 23, who was pursuing a Masters in electrical engineering at the Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville campus, was found dead in her cousin Vikram Reddy’s car near a lake. Vikram, 27, who was a software engineer in Chicago, was also found dead in the lake.

Mystery still shrouds the deaths, though police have recovered the killer gun.

Hemalatha cried inconsolably as the body of her daughter was brought home in Padmaraonagar in Secunderabad.

Vikram’s body has not yet been brought home. According to family members, the body is expected in a few days.

Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member V. Hanumantha Rao and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) legislator T. Srinivas Yadav reached Soumya’s house to console the girl’s family.

Yadav alleged that the state government failed to render any assistance and Soumya’s family had to make all arrangements to bring the body.

The transportation cost for Soumya’s body was borne by an insurance company, while Vikram’s family spent $7,500 for the purpose.

Hanumantha Rao said Vikram’s body was expected to be brought home in a couple of days.

Hailing from the backward Adilabad district, Soumya’s family had migrated to the city after her father Bhoopal Reddy’s death about a decade ago. She went to the US last June after completing her B.Tech.

Soumya’s family received the information on Sep 15 that she was found murdered. The family was in for another shock the next day when Vikram’s body was also found in the lake.

Vikram, son of Soumya’s mother’s elder sister, was working as a software engineer in a private company in Chicago. The US police said his death was expected to have taken place around the same time as Soumya’s.

Hailing from Nizamabad district, Vikram had gone to the US six years ago. After finishing his Masters, he had been working with a software firm. The two were reportedly sharing an apartment in Chicago.

This is the fourth incident of students hailing from Andhra Pradesh being killed under suspicious circumstances in the US in the last 10 months.

While A. Srinivas, a post-graduate medical student from Karimnagar, was killed in March this year, Allam Kiran Kumar and K. Chandrasekhar Reddy, both pursuing their Ph.D courses, were shot dead at Louisiana University in December 2007.

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